Roman Blood (Ring)

by Steven Saylor | Mystery & Thrillers |
ISBN: 1854879731 Global Overview for this book
Registered by Mastulela of Nuneaton, Warwickshire United Kingdom on 3/8/2005
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15 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by Mastulela from Nuneaton, Warwickshire United Kingdom on Tuesday, March 08, 2005
Gordianus, the finder, is asked to help the young Cicero, advocate and orator, defend a farmer Sextus Roscius of the heinous Roman crime of parricide. It is Cicero's first case, and is the one which established his reputation.

Journal Entry 2 by Mastulela from Nuneaton, Warwickshire United Kingdom on Thursday, March 10, 2005
Postal release today. RING

Netstation
CoolboxUk
Loopy1
Wistfuldragon
Tehuti
YowlYY <---

Journal Entry 3 by wingNetstationwing from Coventry, West Midlands United Kingdom on Monday, March 14, 2005
I think this must have arrived on Saturday, but I was away and I've just collected it from the PO today. Thanks Mastulela, I'll get on with this as soon as I finish Christina Lamb's fabulous biography of Stewart Gore-Brown.

Journal Entry 4 by wingNetstationwing from Coventry, West Midlands United Kingdom on Friday, April 01, 2005
An excellent introduction to the work of Steven Saylor, I think. Gordianus is a good companion in this tour of Rome, he knows the high life and the seedier parts, and he also knows that treachery and greed know no boundaries.

Good strong characters and a twisty plot helped to win me over. I enjoy any historical mystery / thriller that has a good basis in fact and this certainly qualifies on that score.

This is now off to coolboxuk, and I have a feeling that they will enjoy it as much as I did.

Journal Entry 5 by rem_XGD-219596 on Sunday, April 10, 2005
Received this today upon return from holidays, along with 2 other ring books. Typical... Looking forward to reading it, though. Shouldn't be too long...

Journal Entry 6 by rem_XGD-219596 on Sunday, April 24, 2005
I really enjoyed this read! (I knew I would because I had read Catalina's Riddle a couple of years back and loved that, too - another Gordianus mystery.) I felt transported right into ancient Rome evey time I picked up the book, and also to my school days - I went to school in Germany at what we called a humanistic high school: main subject is Latin! - we read loads of Cicero's stuff and it's really quite interesting! The fact that Cicero is involved in this story, not just being talked about but as a main character, made it so real...
Also on a more general note: great suspense, great historical detail. Thanks for sharing this book!!!

Journal Entry 7 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Monday, May 09, 2005
A mystery, based on a real life story, and with real characters. What more can you ask of a book?

We caught a tv programme recently (was it this very case?) and so signed up to read the book. So I don't know whether DH will grab it before I have a chance to, but we're both looking forward to reading it. Thanks!

Journal Entry 8 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Saturday, June 04, 2005
I really did enjoy this book. It made a really good mystery, with twists and turns a-plenty, and the fact that it was based on a real historical case with real characters was the icing on the cake. I'll definitely be looking out for other books by this author now.

DH has taken this book, which will take him about two days (he has much more reading time than I do!) and as soon as he's finished I'll be passing it on to WistfulDragon.

Journal Entry 9 by WistfulDragon from Streatham, Greater London United Kingdom on Friday, June 17, 2005
Got the book yesterday, and thanks to a fortuitous finishing of my last book (and a not so fortuitous lack of computer yesterday!) have already started it. Maybe I can pass it back to you at the Cherry Tree meet, Mastulela? Not too far in yet - page 60 - but loving it.

Journal Entry 10 by WistfulDragon from Streatham, Greater London United Kingdom on Tuesday, June 21, 2005
Excellent book! Oh dear, I now have another author to look out for.
The realism is far greater than in other books I have read in this genre - or so I suppose, not having lived in Ancient Rome myself, whatever my children might think *g*. The plot isn't straight forward (thank goodness!), and I made a couple of wrong guesses - another definite plus. Thank you for including me in this ring!

I'm setting the status to travelling, as some time in the not too distant future the book will be making its way back to Mastulela.

Journal Entry 11 by tehuti from Swansea, Wales United Kingdom on Sunday, July 03, 2005
This was passed to me at the Unconvention. YowlYY was going to take it to read first, but then she disappeared home without me noticing. I promise to read as soon as possible so I can pass it on to her.

Journal Entry 12 by tehuti from Swansea, Wales United Kingdom on Wednesday, September 14, 2005
Hmm, so much for promising a fast read! I really enjoyed the detailed descriptions of ancient Rome, warts and all, but must admit that I found the plot a little frustrating. However, my appetite is sufficiently whetted for me to keep a look-out for other books by this author.

I'll be contacting Yowlyy to pass this book on when I get back from yet another journey on the 26th.

Journal Entry 13 by YowlYY on Saturday, October 15, 2005
Tehuti kindly brought this for me at the Nottingham meetup today. It is now the fifth bookring taking temporary residence with me, and I hope it is ok if it will take a while for me to get through to it. In the meantime, I will await instructions from the ringmaster whether the book shall return home, or the ring is going to be extended to more participants.

Journal Entry 14 by YowlYY on Monday, November 21, 2005
This was a really good mystery, once again Mastulela's recommendations can only mean one thing: if it's a series, then I am doomed! I will be looking now for the other books (I think there are 10 more, oh my!), as I think Gordianus is a very likeable character with all the human characteristics of the private detective of our times. Will the other stories be so full of surprises?
I certainly liked the twists in this story, and I was kept guessing until the end, and never experienced a dull moment. Thanks for this great introduction!

Mastulela informed me that the book now has turned into a ray, so I will try to find some more readers for it. I will try the UK first, and then will extend the ray to the rest of the world. It is only fair that this book should see as many countries as possible, dealing with Roma, caput mundi!

Journal Entry 15 by YowlYY on Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Second leg of the ray (start: 24 November 2005):

- Rillaith (UK)
- kizmiaz (Portugal)
- Introoder (Italy)
- lizzyblack (Italy)
- rainbow3 (UK)
- ReetPetite (UK)
- scotsbookie (UK)
- librarymousie (USA, ships intern.) <---- reading book!
- Neuilly (USA, ships intern.)
- LyekkaMarengo (USA, ships intern.)
- lupurk (Italy)
- sarina79 (Italy, can ship intern.)
- NeedSun (Canada, can ship intern.)
- jessicaloveyou (Singapore, can ship intern.)
- back to Rillaith (UK) for her friend with similar taste in books
- ???

Journal Entry 16 by Rillaith from Wokingham, Berkshire United Kingdom on Friday, November 25, 2005
Arrived today, all dry ;) - thank you!

Journal Entry 17 by Rillaith from Wokingham, Berkshire United Kingdom on Monday, December 12, 2005
Excellent book, *so* glad to have read this! Another new author for my watch list :)

Despite not being a fan of most historical novels, this one was so well written, and the mystery engaging, that it was a very comfortable and thoroughly enjoyable read. If it weren't a book ring, I'd have been giving this straightway to a friend of mine with similar reading tastes!

On its way to Portugal :) Enjoy!

Journal Entry 18 by kizmiaz from Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Thursday, December 22, 2005
Got it today with some treats for my teeth, thank you very much Rillaith, and a merry X-mas to you too.
Got one more to read before I start on this one.

Journal Entry 19 by kizmiaz from Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Monday, January 02, 2006
I must start by saying that I’m a big fan of the Roman Empire, with all that it achieved and all that it represented, ok some of you might say that there was a lot of bad stuff and all but hey they got it done.
That being said I must say I enjoyed this book. The characters were well built and the plot twists and turns in all the right places.
We are given an image of Rome quite accurate and vivid, as for the Romans… well the action takes place in a time when too many Romans were loving Rome not like it was their mother but like it was their concubine, and as a reaction characters like Cicero emerged.
The main character, Gordianus, brings quite a colour to the whole book, since he deals with the noblest Roman citizens and also with the rabble, he himself is not much above them, and his perspective on both is quite humorous. Also he has a very practical mind but not out of place in the context.
Sent to Introoder.

Journal Entry 20 by Introoder from Roma, Lazio Italy on Tuesday, February 07, 2006
My goodness, such a late, late journal entry! I apologise for such a delay... i got the book a few days ago, and then forgot to journal it!

And, shame on me, it is still on my TBR pile, even if it climbed its way up to the top... It's the next book I'll read, after I finish the bookring I'm currently in.

Please bear with me for a few more weeks...

Journal Entry 21 by Introoder from Roma, Lazio Italy on Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Definitely a good book, well written and with an intriguing plot, unveiled only in the last pages. Another rare quality of this novel is to have a good, touching finale, so different from the dull endings that many novels nowadays have.

All this said, I must admit that the novel raised some perplexities, especially for a modern Roman like myself.

First of all, the temperature. Saylor dwells so much on the fact that the central hours of the day were so hot that practically no activities could be performed, and the characters suffer so much from that heat. We're speaking of the first 15 days of May (the trial is on the Ides of May), and for as exceptional as the heat can be, the temperature very rarely exceeds 30° celsius in may, being rather around 25. Maybe Mr. Saylor confused Rome with Alexandria... :-)

Second, Tiro, the slave who's a central character in the novel. It's true, Cicero had educated slaves, there is historic evidence of this (which I remember very well, having translated it during my high school years), but I believe that Cicero's attitude towards Tiro is way too 'modern'. Too 'democratic', let me say. Cicero is depicted here (and absolutely was) as the champion of Roman morale, traditions and manners. A reactionary, conservative man who tried to restore the traditional principles that made Rome great. I doubt that such a man would let a slave interrupt the leader of Rome (and of the world, let me add) without having him flogged almost to death.

Nonetheless, as already said, the book is absotutely enjoyable, and the characters are very well described. In particular, I loved the way Cicero was described, as a nervous, anxious, stubborn - almost neurotic - man... all true, since that's how historians talk about him, but to read it in a book gave me a subtle pleasure, remembering how much I struggled to translate the 'Pro Sexto Roscio Amerino' in my school days... :-D

I'll send the book to Lizzyblack tomorrow.

Journal Entry 22 by winglizzyblackwing from Kinsale, Co. Cork Ireland on Tuesday, March 21, 2006
The book is here with me, I just ask you to be patient as I have a huge pile of rings to read!!

Journal Entry 23 by winglizzyblackwing from Kinsale, Co. Cork Ireland on Friday, June 09, 2006
Considering the fact that I usally am not a 'mistery' lover, I really liked this book! Well, perhaps, the fact that I love this part of history, helped me a lot! I must admit I had the same doubt about weather conditions, but, at the same time, as I'm not english mothertongue, the book is really well written, as it took me a little to read it all! It's great how the characters are described, even funny sometimes!!
Thanx a lot!!

Journal Entry 24 by rainbow3 from Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, July 04, 2006
Yipitee-do-da this arrived on Thursday the 29th of June & being the only Ring/Ray book in my orbit just now I quickly slipped it into my bag while dashing out the door. Over lunch I found myself enthusiastically describing it to a stranger and even waved it under her nose when I forgot the authors name, well I was only on page 4 by then and the book still fresh to me. There's only so much reading I can do on the bus when I am holding a map in my other hand and supposed to be on the lookout for a new-to-me location.

Update: Tue 4th July 06 ~ Gordianus the finder seems terrier like in his devotion to uncovering the facts behind a murder which as far as many as concerned has an obvious culprit. For Gordianus there is nothing like a few inconsistencies to power up his curiosity to a level that propels him head first into dangerous territory. He seems quick thinking, quite pragmatic and appears to understand his own weaknesses but that doesn't stop him getting in over his head before all becomes clear. I liked the interaction with Bethesda and also his introduction to and working relationship with Cicero and his slave, Tiro. There were some tender and very amusing moments throughout. The political bits and depth plot explanation fandangeling I'll honestly admit I sped through like a wee steam train but I really loved the technicolour description of Roman life. I really appreciate the background being brought to life so exactingly, I just thought of the early Italian ruins I have walked round and the mosaics and other artefacts I have examined so often in museums and the story started to run in my head like a film.

Thanks all who have conspired to bring this to my door and if anyone is running a ray or ring for the next in the series I'm in!

Right I had better scoot off to see where this is to go next... ...and to my delight it's off to ReetPetite. I say to my delight as I already have ReetPetite's address. This is great as I wont hold up the book but be able to get it posted tomorrow. I am off line at home (since 3rd March groan) and generally I only check my email every week or so. Right thanks all again but especially to lizzyblack, (for kindly negotiating posting this to me so it arrived after I returned from Hols in Orkney) YowlYY (sending this on a book ray - smart idea) and Mastulela (for bookcrossing this book - brilliant choice!)

Journal Entry 25 by rainbow3 at -- Controlled Release in Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Released 14 yrs ago (7/5/2006 UTC) at -- Controlled Release in Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

RELEASE NOTES:

Off into the post to ReetPetite just a few minutes ago! Postal Bookcrossing I LOVE it. Yip yip!

Thanks again to all who brought this fine book to my door you're all FAB!


Journal Entry 26 by wingReetPetitewing from Beeston, Nottinghamshire United Kingdom on Friday, July 14, 2006
Thanks Rainbow3 for sending this well packaged book & for YowlYY for the ray.
I've been on holiday so it was waiting for me when I got back.

Journal Entry 27 by wingReetPetitewing from Beeston, Nottinghamshire United Kingdom on Monday, July 31, 2006
A very good mystery with a lot about Roman life, especially the day to day life, public latrines etc. I couldn't get interested in the politics really.
Happy ending for Eco, I was worried about him.

Thanks for the ray YowlYY, I'll be sending it to Scotsbookie soon.

Journal Entry 28 by scotsbookie from Peebles, Scotland United Kingdom on Saturday, August 05, 2006
Picked up from the Post Office this morning, postie never knocked the door yesterday just put a note saying the packet was too big for the letter box!

Thank you ReetPetite & for the chocolate extra.

Journal Entry 29 by scotsbookie from Peebles, Scotland United Kingdom on Sunday, August 20, 2006
This doesn't happen to me often & I was really looking forward to reading the book, but unfortunately I just couldn't get into it. So after 6 chapters I've decided to give up & send it on to librarymousie who will hopefully enjoy it as so many of you have.

Journal Entry 30 by scotsbookie from Peebles, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Popped in the post to librarymousie via surface mail this morning.

Journal Entry 31 by librarymousie from Portsmouth, New Hampshire USA on Monday, October 02, 2006
This arrived sometime last week and I never sat down to record it (for shame!). I'm in the midst of another ring now, but hope to begin this by next week.

Thank you!

Journal Entry 32 by librarymousie from Portsmouth, New Hampshire USA on Saturday, October 28, 2006
A quick and enjoyable read. Twisty and turny as good mysteries should be.

Thank you for sharing this with me!

PMing next reader and hope to have in the mail next week.


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